(This email is only arriving on Friday a.m. because my internet was down. Sorry!)
OK. It’s August now. A week or so ago I announced the start of the ‘real’ harvest season. But…brrr is it cold! Not much happens in the plant world without a bit of warmth, and August heat is pretty critical to the big plan. I was hard pressed to find the quantities of beans,zucchinis, and chard that I needed for both wholesale and CSA orders. Tomorrow is my first Thursday at market and I’m afraid the stand will look pretty bare. I know how effective CSA members have been in the past , when we needed rain and everyone did their version of rain dances. So now I’m asking you all to turn on the charm and bring out the real summer weather. Everything is poised to bloom and fruit and that heat is the only missing ingredient.
Especially beautiful right now are tomatoes, with so many hopeful yellow blooms. The clusters of tomatoes already formed are unusually full and bountiful. But unless we get going soon, I’ll be bringing in bushels and bushels of green tomatoes come frost time, which I anticipate to arrive around Sept. 20. this year. Beans likewise are all bloom and no bean. Crazy.
Your boxes have Kentucky Wonder beans this week, which I consider to be my best bean. This very old heritage bean is ginormous all right, but always tender, meaty and delicious in flavour. Cook slowly for best results, think about maybe combining with corn, potatoes, tomatoes and zucchini. Marvelous Maike, who helps out on Wednesdays, seasoned hers with cumin, tumeric, cinnamon, curry, and hungry Titia ate all hers without even warming it up.
Mustard greens are Dijon-mustardy when raw and much milder when cooked. They combine well with any dry bean dish and raw are excellent on a ham or cheese sandwich. Use fairly soon, they don’t have a long shelf life.
A variety of zucchini went out in your boxes today: striped green (Costata Romanesca) are excellent grilled, nutty and firm, regular green sop up flavour in a ratatouille, yellow crookneck are a later squash, a bit more corn flavoured, light green bulbous types are mid-East Cousa, delicate and very creamy and smooth, they do not keep well, so use promptly, and scallopini are flying saucers of the best kind, baby zucchini flavour, tender crisp texture, I tend to a simple cooking for these, usually sauteeing in garlic butter.
Lastly, the garlic has dried enough to be braided so if you are interested in garlic or garlic braids for the winter just let me know, by phone if possible, 268-2248. All braids have 12 bulbs, smaller bulb braids are from $18-25, medium $25-35 and large (limited quantity) $35-50.
Till next time, keep your long johns handy,